A day at the beach

With 50 per cent of Australian homes being less than eight miles from a beach, it’s hardly surprising we take a day by the sea for granted. But as I recently found out, we have beaches that really should be celebrated.

I am one of the lucky ones who live within a five to ten minute walk to the beach, yet how often do I go there? Maybe once or twice during the summer months. However, I have had family stay with me over the last few weeks and every opportunity they have had, they’ve been down on the sand and swimming in the sea. But what makes it so appealing?

Growing up in the UK the only time I ever went to the beach was on our two week summer holiday. My family and I would head to one of the UK’s seaside resorts and diligently go to the beach everyday. However, while on an Australian beach you need some shade from the sun, a UK beach requires protection from the wind and sometimes rain. Hardly surprising then that going to the beach never really appealed.

So, after three days of my aunt and uncle sitting on the beach, I decided to join them. Living in Melbourne, the Bayside beaches are not particularly crowded and the choice of which beach to go to is the most difficult part of the day. Once this hurdle is out of the way, simply throw a towel on the sand, grab your favourite book and let the day pass you by. Which was exactly what we did. And fish and chips on the beach for dinner rounded off a near-perfect day.

The Coastal Studies Unit at the University of Sydney has counted 10,685 mainland beaches in Australia, as well as 838 beaches on 30 inhabited islands; that’s a lot of beaches. And each of these beaches offers something different, whether it’s the view, wildlife, water sports, or simply the colour of the sand. So the next time you’re thinking of a way to pass the time, why not head shore side and take advantage of a beautiful, natural resource?

Where’s your favourite beach? Do you often go to the beach or do you find the idea unappealing?

Written by Debbie McTaggart